The Beauty of Bingo in the Classroom

Do you use Bingo games in your classroom?  Have you ever purchased a commercial Bingo game for classroom use?

I love to use Bingo games!  Over the years, I purchased MANY commercial Bingo games.  I often purchased the same commercial games over and over because one or two calling cards were missing, and I was too much of a perfectionist to make a new card by hand. The thing that I love about Teachers Pay Teachers is that you never have to repurchase a game because a piece or two or more are missing.  You just go to your “My Purchases” page and download the game again, then print of just what you need to replace. Brilliant!!

So, what do children learn from playing bingo? The list is endless, but here are some, listening, following directions, waiting, looking closely to find a picture, number, letter, symbol, or word and finding columns and rows. Along with those, almost any academic skill from phonics to sight words to vocabulary and other literacy skills to math, social studies, and science. Just about everything can be taught, practiced, or reviewed with bingo games.

Bingo game materials are versital and should be used in multiple ways.The calling cards for a bingo game can be used in many ways.  They can be used for teaching vocabulary and identifying exactly what the picture on a card (Is it a hog or a pig?).  They can be used for sorting and categorization, or for review.

Bingo games can be used as whole class activities or in small groups. They are great to leave in a sub tub.  They can be used by classroom volunteers with 2 to 4 students.  A great tool to use with calling cards is a document camera so that everyone can see the picture, letter, number, etc. clearly and in detail.

One of my favorite bingo tips is to use linking cubes for markers.  Just give each child a “tower” of linky cubes containing the number needed for the bingo cards being used.  When the bingo game is finished, the students link the cubes back into a “tower” and put them away.  I keep my bingo linky cubes in a basket,so that a substitute can easily find them.  Individual bingo games are stored in plastic boxes.

Children love bingo games.  Bingo games help children gently stretch their attention spans, and encourage good sportsmanship.  “No, you may not tear your card in half because you did not win.”  Yes, I have said that quite a few times over the years.  Bingo games also encourage graceful winning. I do not give prizes to Bingo winners.  When a child asks, “What do I get if I win.,” I reply, “You get to be the winner.”  Even though they know from the begining that there will be no prizes, the children enjoy bingo and beg to play it.  They are thrilled when I say we are playing bingo today.

To see my Word Family Bingo Game with a Superhero Theme click here.

Bingo Coverbingo boardbingo board 2

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